China may try to use aspects of the S-400 surface-to-air missile (SAM) system it began receiving from Russia in 2018 to reverse-engineer capabilities it lacks, the Pentagon said in a recent report on Wednesday.
China in 2020 fielded its first missile with a hypersonic glide vehicle and advanced its scramjet engine development, which has applications in hypersonic cruise missiles, the Pentagon said in its report titled Military and Security Development Involving the People’s Republic of China, 2021.
China produces a wide range of missiles–ballistic, cruise, air-to-air, and surface-to-air–for the PLA and for export.
The Chinese Navy revealed during its 70th-anniversary celebration in April 2019 that its new guided-missile cruiser can employ long-range land-attack cruise missiles. Within the past 2 years, Beijing made its first sale of a surface-to-air missile system to a European nation, Serbia, the report stated.
Beijing is developing a ramjet-powered air to air missile in addition to the beyond-visual-range PL-15, which was featured at the 2018 Air Show in Zhuhai. Beijing’s space industry, historically managed by the PLA, is rapidly expanding its intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, navigation, and communication satellite constellations, the report read.
China, the top ship-producing nation in the world by tonnage, is increasing its shipbuilding capacity and capability for all naval classes, including submarines, warships, and transport and amphibious ships.
Beijing domestically produces naval gas turbine and diesel engines, as well as almost all shipboard weapons and electronic systems for its shipbuilding sector, making the sector nearly self-sufficient for all shipbuilding needs, the report added.
China’s production capacity is improving in nearly every category of PLA ground systems, including armored personnel carriers, assault vehicles, air defense artillery systems, artillery systems, and pieces, and main and light battle tanks, according to the report.